Preliminary hearings for the new claims will be heard in the coming months.
These new legal claims would not have been possible without the help of Maria Ludkin and Justin Bowden at the GMB and Michael Newman at Leigh Day, who have been there for me when needed.
In contrast, Unite and Ucatt are refusing to help. They should be ashamed of themselves.
End The Blacklisting - 10 Minute Version
I am the whistle-blower who
exposed the secret blacklisting of 3,213 workers by over 40 of the UK's
leading construction companies from 1993 to 2009.
Rob Evans best sums this up in this Guardian article from 2009.
created this page to help raise the money needed to fund the legal help
required for the next stage of my new blacklisting/whistle-blowing
claims (the preliminary hearings), which are due to be heard between
June and September 2016.
It's a 5 - 10 minute read and is a real
life account of how the corporate rich and powerful work together to
Keeping whistle-blowers down spreads the fear and prevents others from coming forward.
There are far too many similar stories to mine, in which whistle-blowers are isolated, ill treated and forced out.
This has to stop if we want a fair, honest and just society.
I was employed in senior human resources positions within the construction industry from 1993 to 2005, including:
National Labour Manager at Carillion
Business Improvement Director at Emcor Drake & Scull
Regional Production & HR Manager at Haden Young
As a result, I gained direct experience of how the blacklisting operated.
Balfour Beatty Cover Up
2005, while at Haden Young (a Balfour Beatty subsidiary), I made
various disclosures under the whistleblowing procedure to their
Directors about their use of the blacklist and widespread financial
fraud relating to their labour costs controls.
dismissed, which led me to subsequently raise them with Balfour Beatty's
Group HR Director, Paul Raby and the Company Secretary, Chris Pearson.
Raby was subsequently named by Ian Kerr as a main contact with the
Consulting Association (the company set up and funded by the
construction companies to run the blacklisting) in his evidence to the
select committee inquiry in 2012).
They too dismissed my claims,
which left me isolated, alone and unable to return to Haden Young. I
had been signed off sick by my doctor with 'work related stress' at this
time, and Raby and Pearson's inaction left me with no other option than
I was also unaware at the time that Balfour Beatty's
Trevor Watchman was the current Consulting Association Chairman. Raby
and Pearson would most certainly have known this.
Ten years on and I'm now vindicated.
Beatty and their subsidiaries, Haden Young and Balfour Kilpatrick (now
merged as Balfour Beatty Engineering Services) were found to be prolific
blacklisters following the raid on the Consulting Association in 2009,
and have recently reported a series of substantial profit
warnings/losses of around £500 million, relating to poor costs controls.
Raby however is still employed as Balfour Beatty's HR Director.
could not understand how a person with such complicity in all this
could still be employed after all this time until it was explained to me
by a BBC researcher.
Her explanation was simple. "He knows where all the bodies are buried".
Exposing the Blacklisting
March 2006, I created a website to help publicise the blacklisting.
This was the first time the existence of the blacklist and a description
of how it operated were made public. I made contact with a number of
blacklisted workers and helped them with their claims to the employment
Trade Union Cover Up
provided my blacklisting evidence to senior trade union officials at
Amicus/Unite in 2005 and the then General Secretary, Derek Simpson in
2006, who buried this to protect the millions they were receiving in
union subscriptions via a deal with the construction companies at the
time. You can learn all about this from this Radio 4 documentary in 2013 (from 9:00 to 15:00).
Derek Simpson subsequently retired from Unite in 2011 with a £510,659 retirement package.
only had I been let down by my employer and their parent company, I had
now also been let down by my union, who did not get involved in taking
any legal action on the blacklisting until six years later in 2012.
August 2006 I started work as a HR Business Partner at my previous
employer, Carillion plc. After about six weeks, I met Liz Keates, who
was later exposed as a prolific Consulting Association user and source
of information on many many blacklist files. The next day I was told
that my contract had been terminated with immediate effect, with no
2006 I took Haden Young to an employment tribunal. It was me against the
unlimited financial and legal resources of Balfour Beatty. They lied, I
lost, and they were able to continue their blacklisting.
The Labour Government
January 2007 I met with a senior official from the DTI under the Labour
Government and presented him with my blacklisting evidence. They also
failed to take any action and the blacklisting continued. This was
reported in this BBC report.
I also wrote to many senior Labour politicians at the time, but none of them did anything.
My Blacklist File
a result of my ongoing campaign to expose the blacklisting, I too was
placed on the blacklist sometime between January and April 2007.
blacklist file entries include details of an employment tribunal in
Manchester (where I appeared as a witness for the successful claimants),
the judgment, and coverage from the Morning Star.
The evidence I
gave in that employment tribunal was directly responsible for the
Guardian’s investigation, which in turn led to the Information
Commissioner's investigation (in which I assisted), and the raid on the
Consulting Association in 2009.
Had it not also been for the efforts of the following:
Steve Acheson - electrician
Graham Bowker - electrician
Tony Jones - electrician
Rob Evans - journalist
Phil Chamberlain - journalist
David Clancy at the ICO
Liam Dunne & Sean Curran at Guney, Clark & Ryan
the blacklisting would most certainly still be the Construction Industry's dirty little secret.
My New Website
I continued to campaign about the blacklisting and published many articles and much new evidence on my new blacklisting website
from 2009 to 2016. I also gave evidence to the Scottish Affairs Select
Committee for their Blacklisting Inquiry in November 2012.
It's been a long hard journey.
The High Court Claims
years on around 771 of the 3,213 blacklisted workers have now received
approximately £30 million in compensation from eight of the construction
companies involved (Balfour Beatty Group Limited, Carillion plc,
Costain Group plc, Kier Group plc, Laing O’Rourke plc, Sir Robert
McAlpine Limited, Skanska UK plc, Vinci plc).
settled the matter a few days before a High Court trial was to begin on 9
May 2016. They had previously spent tens of millions on lawyers to
resist the claims for years in a bid to break the resolve of the
This £30 million will also get passed down to the
other thirty or so Consulting Association members in part 20 claims,
which could average less than a million for each of the forty companies.
This is buttons to the likes of Balfour Beatty, who enjoy an annual turnover of around £14 billion.
The Personal Effect
efforts to expose the blacklisting have had major consequences. I lost
my career, and my relationships with my long-term girlfriend and my son
and daughter. I also recently lost my home.
I turned down an
offer of £20,000 from Balfour Beatty in 2006 (which included a gagging
clause) and then had to borrow an additional £20,000 (adding and extra
£1,500 a year interest to my mortgage) to hire a barrister to represent
me at my tribunal (which at least enabled me to get the blacklisting
evidence into the public domain).
I also had to pay around
£40,000 in credit card interest between 2007 to 2015 on the £15,000 debt
accumulated while I was unemployed back in 2006/2007.
I have also now been unemployed for the last 18 months, after making hundreds of applications for work.
The New Blacklisting Regulations
As a result of my disclosures and the subsequent raid on the Consulting
Association in 2009, the Labour Government brought in new Blacklisting
Regulations in 2010.
These also relate to job applications made
via recruitment agencies, which is essential, as the companies take
advantage of this additional wall of protection when it comes to their
I am certain that blacklisting did
continue beyond the raid on the Consulting Association in 2009 and is no
longer a secret database held in a secret location.
Recruitment agencies have also built up their own records on blacklisted workers, evidence of which is available on my website.
Blacklisting by these companies and their recruitment agency suppliers
has evolved and will continue to evolve unless serious attention is
given to eradicating it forever.
The High Court settlement will not achieve this.
The New Blacklisting Legal Claims
I currently have over fifty legal claims accepted by the employment
tribunal with thirty four respondents (including Balfour Beatty,
Carillion, Laing O'Rourke, Kier and their recruitment agency suppliers)
for breach of the new blacklisting regulations and other whistleblowing
Rob Evans best sums this up in this Guardian article from April this year.
I am certain that this is an opportunity to prove that blacklisting is
current and widespread in the UK construction industry, but Unite have
again refused to help following a recent approach.
received some legal assistance, but the window to prove contemporary
blacklisting will pass if I don’t now get the urgent financial support
and help I need to take these claims forward.
however have to be a real willingness to do this from all the trade
unions, politicians and blacklisted workers involved.
of the 3,213 blacklisted workers were fortunate enough to be represented
in the High Court claim, and as mentioned, they have recently received
in the region of £50 million in a settlement agreement.
I am now
therefore appealing to them, their trade unions and any other
interested parties to make a donation to help fund the legal assistance
required to ensure these new blacklisting claims are upheld.
How Will The Money Be Used?
donations have already ensured that the claims were correctly drafted
and presented to the employment tribunal, but further funds are now
needed to ensure they are correctly presented at the preliminary
These will take place between June and September 2016, so it's vital that further funds are raised as soon as possible.
Please however do contact me if you would like me to explain further about how the donations will be used.
a positive note, my relationships with my girlfriend and daughter are
reconciled, but I lost them both for many years that I will never get
back. We are working on my son.
I still however have to find a way to return to work.
Thank you for reading this appeal.
is a covert abhorrent practice that prevents certain people (with a
social conscience who have stood up to management and raised legitimate
concerns about health & safety, fraud, corruption, etc) from working
in this country.
Please do not leave without making a small donation to help me stop this via My Crowd Fund Page
If you want to donate anonymously, I will never disclose your identity.
Please also do get in touch if you can help in any other way.
If you cannot afford to donate at this time, please share as far and wide as you can.
But Please Donate